MasterCard has eliminated one step in the in-person payment process for customers using the cards. Mastercard announced it will no longer require signatures at point of sale, effective next April. More than 80 percent of all Mastercard transactions in North America don’t require a cardholder signature at checkout.

“Eliminating the need for signature is another step in the digital evolution of payments and payment security,” says Linda Kirkpatrick, executive vice-president of MasterCard’s U.S. market development division.

Customers usually scrawl their signatures without concern for legibility. Removing that step is aimed at making the checkout process easier for card holders.

In a article, “That, said Kirkpatrick, is a win for everyone: It’s good for consumers, who can get out of line more quickly, and great for the merchant who doesn’t have to train a cashier or force consumers to wait in line longer than needed.

“Those benefits are accruing without any loss or increased risk to either party. The consumer still enjoys the same zero fraud liability they always have, while the merchant relies on things like tokens, EMV and biometrics instead of scribbled gibberish that serves as nothing more than a proxy for the customer’s name.”

Merchants still have the option to require a signature if they wish. Read more here.